R.J. Palacio, born July 13, 1963 in New York City, is a veteran art director and book-jacket designer who has transitioned into writing children's books. Her first novel, Wonder, debuted in 2012 and reached number one on The New York Times Best Seller list. Though her real name is Raquel Jaramillo, she wrote in under the pen name R.J. Palacio.
Palacio was writing Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope: Being the Story of Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader, and the Rise of the Rebellion, a young-readers retelling of the original Star Wars film. However, due to scheduling conflicts, she was forced to withdraw from the project. She was replaced by Alexandra Bracken. Less than two weeks after Palacio's exit, the project was relisted as simply A New Hope Illustrated Novel. The project was eventually retitled A New Hope: The Princess, the Scoundrel, and the Farm Boy.
The main character in Palacio's novel Wonder is obsessed with Star Wars.